Finland’s airport network operator Finavia has joined Network for Electric Aviation (NEA) to support the development of electric aviation.

The Nordic initiative aims to speed-up the development of electric aviation in the Nordic countries.

The move is part of Finavia’s climate programme undertaken with the view to reduce CO2 emissions at Finnish airports. Finavia’s goal is to make these Finnish airports carbon dioxide neutral by 2020.

Joining the NEA is one of the operator’s initiatives towards the development of electric aircraft.

Finavia has already funded a fully electric aircraft, which conducted flight trials successfully at Malmi Airport in Helsinki in 2018.

Finavia technical director Henri Hansson said: “Electric-powered aircraft will likely be a vital part of tackling the environmental challenges of the aviation industry. As an airport operator, we want to find out what kind of development electric flying will require from our airports.”

“I believe that, in Finland, the first electric passenger aircraft will fly on a domestic route by the end of the 2020s. If a clean method such as wind or solar power is used to produce the necessary electricity, the electric aircraft of the future could fly completely emission-free. Electric aircraft will be suited especially for short routes.”

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The NEA network consists of Nordic airport operators, Nordic airlines and start-ups specialised in electric aviation work on infrastructure, industry issues and new business models.

In November 2018, Finavia announced plans to use Neste MY Renewable Diesel in vehicles at Rovaniemi, Kuusamo, Ivalo and Kittilä airports in Finland.